Meath DCU students deprived of the direct bus to DCU are up in arms
with disruption of the 109A service that has not been
reinstated following the reopening of the third level.
A university that serves many Meath students that travel daily to DCU.
The 109A bus that previously used to travel from Kells to Dublin Airport, via DCU discontinued their
service that went to the college sometime in December 2020, due to the fact that all colleges
offered online classes. However, this academic year, classes are to be in person, however the
109A bus still has not returned to the original timetable.
Meath Live contacted Bus Éireann and asked if they will be returning to their original
timetable. Bus Éireann replied, “we would like to remind passengers that the core Route
109A timetable now only operates to/from Dublin Airport and no longer serves DCU.
However, the College Term only service from Navan to DCU will continue to operate when
the College Term begins on 27th September. The College only service from Navan at 07:35hrs
and from DCU at 17:15hrs will operate from Monday to Friday. There will also be a 07:30hrs
service operating from Trim to DCU, returning at 17:15 hrs also”.
However, this College Term timetable might not be of any use for postgraduate students who
started college this week and have evening classes that can go onto 9 pm in the evening. Cllr
Gillian Toole (IND) has been onto Bus Éireann requesting that more buses be put on and
advised students, for the time being, to take a Dublin bus from the Airport or from
Charlestown Shopping Centre.
Meath Live spoke to DCU students who rely on the 109A bus. Michael Power from Ratoath,
told Meath Live, “it’s an absolute disaster, completely leaving hundreds if not thousands out
to dry and making it not only harder but longer and more expensive to get to DCU from
Meath and I think it’s the stupidest decision Bus Éireann have made in a long time. Absolutely
poor judgement and decision and they need to rethink ”.
Eoin Cassidy from Nobber, who secured student accommodation, revealed that although he
has student accommodation, when he needs to go back in at the weekend, the bus route
cancellation has left him with no choice but to take 3 buses to the college.
Meath Live was also in contact with Sinn Féin spokesperson for Transport and Meath East
TD, Darren O’Rourke said, “a number of people have been in contact with me about
this… I raised the issue of public transport to primary, secondary, and third-level education
with the Minister. The scale of ambition by this Government to address the gaps is wholly
inadequate… on the 109A, I have contacted Bus Éireann and the NTA and urged them to
revert to the full schedule. As soon as I have a response back, I will let you know”.
Fianna Fáil’s Minister Thomas Byrne has also revealed that he had made “strong
representations to the National Transport Authority, Bus Éireann and the Minister for
Transport seeking that the 109A service reverts to its old route which took in DCU”.
On the 22nd of September, Cllr Toole posted an update on this topic, Mr. Adrian O’Loughlin,
Senior Regional Manager (EAST) for Bus Éireann agreed to attend the October meeting of
Ratoath Municipal district to discuss issues with Bus Éireann services in the Ratoath MD.
Toole has asked the public to email her their queries for the meeting,